Why Emergency Preparedness Matters


Natural disasters, accidents, and tragedies will inevitably occur. While you can't totally avoid these situations, you can prepare for them. When something horrible happens, emergency planning is the simplest approach to minimize the damage. Let's take a look at why disaster preparedness is so important.


What Is Emergency Preparedness?


A Be Prepared sign with the blue sky in the background

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The term "emergency preparedness" refers to the steps you can take to lessen the impact of a disaster on your home, family, and life. The goal is to minimize the impact on your life and to devise a strategy that maximizes resources and time.

When calamity occurs, being prepared can save your life and return entire communities to normal faster than if you were not prepared. Although it takes time to plan ahead, it will benefit the entire family.


Importance of Emergency Preparedness


an image of Water, Fires, Cyclones and Volcano eruptions

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The following are some of the reasons why emergency preparedness matters:


1) Preparation Has the Potential to Save Lives


People can avoid being stuck in dangerous situations if they prepare themselves. Stocking up on food and water can avoid starvation and dehydration. Emergency shelters can keep people safe from dangerous weather and provide a temporary home after a tragedy.

Proper preparation and responsiveness could make the difference between life and death at every stage. It's impossible to predict when disaster strikes. Having a first-aid kit on hand, as well as other medical supplies and an emergency preparedness plan, can go a long way. So, before you dismiss the possibility of being trapped in a dangerous circumstance, reconsider. It's always a good idea to be prepared.


2) Preparation Can Reduce Anxiety and Stress


Both victims and responders might suffer psychologically as a result of disasters and emergencies. While there is no way to totally avoid the negative psychological impacts of a traumatic incident, careful planning can help to alleviate suffering by avoiding unnecessary difficulty and decreasing or eliminating fear. Knowing what to do and where to go might help everyone involved feel less fearful of the unknown and get to safety faster.

Being prepared and stocking up on non-perishable food, medical supplies, and other emergency supplies will come in handy, especially if you live in a region where natural disasters occur frequently. Knowing you have the essentials to survive a situation like this would undoubtedly minimize the worry that comes with being in one.


3) Recovery Can Be Made Easier With Advance Planning


Even with the finest planning, disasters and emergencies frequently result in loss of life. One of the most important aspects of emergency preparedness is to avoid catastrophic losses.

Having the right medical supplies can save a life. If you have a first aid kit, you can stop the bleeding and prevent infection if the person is bleeding profusely. If you are trapped in your home or apartment, having a food supply will allow you to survive for a few days until help arrives. All of this has the potential to save people's lives.


4) Emergency Aid Will Not Be Able To Reach You Immediately


If a tragedy strikes your area, the local government and disaster relief agencies will do everything they can to help, but you must also be prepared. Local responders may not be able to reach you immediately or may need to focus their efforts elsewhere.

Hurricanes, earthquakes, and flooding are all examples of natural disasters that could strike your location. You should be able to survive on your own for at least three days. 


Who Can You Turn to for Assistance When Disaster Strikes?

The American Red Cross Logo

Credit: American Red Cross


A natural disaster can strike in every corner of the globe, at all times of the year, and in a variety of ways. Natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, fires, and tornadoes are just a few examples of natural calamities that may require aid. Nonprofit groups, such as the Red Cross, are examples of disaster relief resources.


The following are some more resources:

  •  Hospitals
  • Food banks
  • Disaster shelters
  • Animal shelters
  • Local government agencies

    There are times when you don't have enough time or notice to prepare. As a result, now is a good time to start planning. While you may never need any of the resources you prepare, it is better to have them and not need them!


    Item Checklist for an Emergency


    A checklist of what you need for your emergency items

    Credit: Dmitri Kovalchuk


    To be prepared for an emergency, make sure you have the following items:


     1) Water


    The amount of water in portable kits will differ. Individuals should determine how much they can comfortably store and move to different locations. Store one gallon of water per person for drinking and sanitation. Water pouches with a long shelf life, such as those used in the marine industry, lessen the need to cycle water as frequently.


    2) Food


    Make sure you have a three-day supply of non-perishable food. Food bars with a long shelf life, such as those used in the marine industry, or military Meals Ready to Eat (MREs), can help eliminate the need to cycle food as often.


    3) Warmth


    Make sure each person has a solar or mylar blanket. Mylar blankets are great for emergency preparedness since they are compact, waterproof, and wind-resistant. When utilized as a sun shelter, a mylar blanket can deflect heat. When wrapped around a person, it also helps to retain body heat.


    4) Light


    Stock up on a variety of lighting sources, such as safety lightsticks, flashlights, and candles. Remember to keep spare batteries on hand and cycle them more frequently if they're kept in the heat.


    5) Medical Supplies


    Medical emergencies during a disaster are not uncommon. Make sure that your first-aid kit is up-to-date and has all the necessities. In case any family member has a medical problem, stock up on their medication. This could save their life when a major disaster occurs.




    One of the most essential decisions you can make for your family is to invest in emergency preparedness. There is a far better possibility of controlling the problem and coping with the situation when family members are physically and emotionally prepared to respond to a tragedy.